Hazrat Sheikh Muhammad Bin Ismail Bukhari (تذکرہ / سوانح)
Ameer-ul-Momineen in Hadith, Muhammad son of Ismail/ Imam Bukhari علیہ الرّحمہ
Name and Lineage:
His name is ‘MUHAMMAD’ and Kunyat is ‘Abu Abdullah’ as well as his titles are ‘Imam-ul-Muhaddiseen, Ameer-ul-Momineen in Hadith’ and his genealogy is as follows:
“Muhammad son of Ismail son of Ibrahim son of Mughirah son of Bardazba Bukhari Ja’fi”
Date of Birth:
He was born in Bukhara, after Asr prayer on Friday in 13 Shawwal-ul-Mukarram, 194 AH/ 19 July, 810 AD.
Acquisition of Knowledge:
After getting early education in Bukhara, Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ got inclined towards acquisition of the Hadith since childhood. He started participating in the teaching circle of Imam Dakhli رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ at the age of ten years and he began to memorize Hadiths, its accuracy and texts through the God-gifted power of memorizing. It was the state of his memorizing power that he memorized all the books and Waqi’ of Abdullah son of Mubarak as well as books of other companions of Imam Azam Abu Hanifaعلیھم الرّحمہ at the age of 18 years. He wrote a book ‘Al-Tareekh-ul-Kabeer’ in the shadow of the green dome of the Holy Prophetصلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم at the same age and he went to Makka-ul-Mukarramah for the first time to gain the knowledge of Hadith in 213 AH. A part from that, he went to Egypt and Syria twice, four times to Basra as well as he went to Baghdad for many times to get the knowledge of Hadith. He acquired Islamic knowledge from more than one thousand Scholars. Eventually, There came a time that he held the designation of Ameer-ul-Momineen in Hadith. Almighty Allah bestowed him and his book ‘Bukhari Shareef’ the popularity in Ummah.
Almighty Allah granted him an unique intelligence and memory and he had awakened brain and bright mind. He did not trust in the pen & paper so much, as he would rely on his memory. Hashid son of Ismail was a great Muhaddith at the time of Bukhari. He said about Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ , “He used to go to Mashaikh of that time along with me but he did not have any pen and ink pot like other students. I told him, when you would not write the Hadith by listening so what is the advantage of your arrival? This hearing is like air that enters to one ear and takes out from the other ear. Sixteen days later, Imam Bukhariرحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ said to me that you disturbed me a lot. Therefore, come and compare my memory with your writers. During this, we had written fifteen thousand Hadiths and Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ stated all those Hadiths in such a manner that I would correct the Hadiths which I had written before. Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ said himself, I chose for my Sahih Bukhari among six lac Hadiths.” (Tazkira-tul-Muhaddiseen, 196)
Character and Peculiarities:
He secured the Ahadith of Rasool Allah جل جلالہ و صلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم in his heart with sincerity and devotion. Similarly, he changed his nature and attributes according to the morality of the Holy Prophet صلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم . he was a prominent personality in piety, mystical exercise, good character, truth and the righteousness. He was an embodiment of the knowledge and grace and he would never remember to anyone with evil and he would always give the goodness in the exchange of evil. He would take care of the self-respect of everyone and he was very patient. He would not take revenge at all for his personal reasons. Naturally, he was very hospitable and humble. He would spend very simply life as well as he would do his own work himself. He would not bother to others. His disciple Muhammad son of Hatim Wiraaq stated, ”Once, Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ was constructing the inn near to Bukhara and he was fixing the bricks on a wall. By moving forward, I requested to him, please! leave it, I will fix them so he said, this act will give me the benefit on the Day of Judgment.” Wiraaq said, when we went to any travel along with Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ , then, he would gather all of us into a room and he would stay alone. Once, I saw him got up fifteen or twenty times in the night and each time he lit up the lamp by setting up fires. After that, he took out some Hadiths and marked them. Then, he would lay down by putting his head on the pillow. I requested him, Hazrat why did you endure much hardship alone at night, you would have awaken me. He replied, you are a young and you sleep soundly and I did not want to disturb you. (Muhaddiseen-e-Uzzam Hayat-o-Khidmaat: P.321)
He never let to be hurt his intellectual honesty and dignity and similarly, he never went to the doors of any rich and wealthy person for his personal reasons. He would stay away from the rulers and rich men. When jealous people requested to governor of Bukhara Khalid son of Ahmed, “please! say to Imam Bukhari that he teach your son by coming at your home.” So he expressed his desire in front of Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ. Then, Imam Sahib said, I did not want to disgrace the knowledge at the kings’ doors. However, student should come in my Dars (teaching circle). Governor said, my son will not study along with ordinary students, rather you will have to teach him separately but Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ replied that I cannot stop to anyone form listening Hadiths. Afterwards, he was compelled to migrate from his homeland. Once, his business partner settled to another country by borrowing 25000 rupees to him. People said to Imam Sahib that you will easily get money from him by taking a letter from the local governor to send it to governor of that area but Imam Bukhari رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ said, if I get the governor to write a recommendatory letter, then they will interrupt my religion and I do not want to lose it in the exchange of world. There is a great lesson in it for today’s Scholars.
His Respect regarding Hadith;
Before writing Hadith Shareef into the book, he would take bath and apply fragrance and then, he would offer two Rakaats of the supererogatory prayer. After that, he would also offer the Istikhara prayer about the precision of Hadith Shareef. Afterwards, he would write down it in his Sahih Bukhari.
Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlvi رحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ said, once Imam Bukhariرحمۃ اللہ تعالٰی علیہ wrote a manuscript and second time, he prepared the fair manuscript and third time, he would present each Hadith Shareef into the auspicious court of the Holy Prophetصلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم and which Hadith directly or indirectly got the confirmation and permission from Rasool Allah جل جلالہ و صلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم through face to face or dream. After getting fully confident about the accuracy of Hadith Shareef, he would write it in his Sahih Bukhari. (Al-Sha'at-al-Lama'at: P. 10)
While performing the Hadith-service of Rasool Allahجل جلالہ و صلی اللہ تعالٰی علیہ وسلم , he passed away at the age of sixty-one years eleven months and eighteen days, on Friday on the first Shawwal-ul-Mukarram, 250 AH/ 1st September, 870 AH. He was buried in Khar Tang near to Samarqand, that is Uzbekistan in present-time. Such fragrant kept on coming from his blessed grave for so long, which was more brilliant than Musk and Amber. Furthermore, people went on carrying the blessed soil from his grave as a ‘Tabarruk’ (presents). (Hadi-al-Sari: 2nd volume, P. 266) Prays are acceptable at his blessed Shrine.. (Irshad-al-Sari: 1st volume, P. 39)